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A.     Constitution

Article I, Name

The name of this organization shall be the Support Group of Howard Community College.

Article II, Purpose of the Organization

For an institution to be responsive to the needs of all members of the community, all aspects of the institution must have a voice in its governance.

The Howard Community College Support Group initiates this document to provide the guidelines by which lines of communication can be established and maintained within the college.  The guidelines are carried out under the direction of the ESG committee.

a. The general goals of the support group are as follows:

  1. To promote unity among the support group of HCC.
  2. To provide opportunity for the exchange of ideas and concerns among members of the support group.
  3. To support an attitude of professionalism.
  4. To provide input for internal governance and other college committees.
  5. To promote the welfare and well-being of the support group.

b. The general functions of the support group are as follows:

  1. To promote a sense of college-wide interaction through support group initiated social functions.
  2. To select members of college-wide committees such as internal governance committees, salary and benefits committee, etc.
  3. To foster exchange of ideas and concerns:
    a.    General meetings are held to exchange information and ideas between support group members.
    b.    General meetings are held to discuss college-wide administrative actions that pertain to the support group.
    c.    General meetings provide an opportunity for all support group members to express their concerns and needs. 
  4. Disseminate information between support group and committee representatives:
    a.    Inform support group of college-wide committee activities (present and proposed).
    b.    Advise committee representatives of support group viewpoint.

Article III, Membership

The Howard Community College Support Group shall consist of the support group as a whole and its executive committee.

The voting membership of the support group as a whole shall consist of all individuals employed full-time and part-time in budgeted position control positions (grades 1-7) within the college, excluding faculty, administrators and professional/technical employees.

Article IV, the Executive Support Group  (ESG) Committee and Representatives to Other Committees

The ESG committee shall be the authorized representative of the college support group, which will serve as the vehicle by which job-related and constituency concerns and input can be integrated into the college system.  The term is July 1 through June 30.

The size of the ESG committee shall be approximately ten representatives each year and shall be evaluated every two years to assure reasonable and adequate representation from across the college.  The number of representatives for the president and each vice president's area will be proportionate to the number of support group members in that particular area. 

Support group representatives to standing college committees shall be appointed by the executive committee.

Article V, Officers of the Executive  Support Group (ESG):

The officers of this organization shall be:

  1. Chairperson - the chairperson is elected every two years by a majority vote of the ESG committee excluding the incumbent chairperson.
  2. Vice Chairperson – the vice chairperson is elected every two years by a majority vote of the ESG  committee.
  3. Secretary – the secretary is selected every two years by the ESG  committee.
  4. Treasurer – the treasurer is selected every two years by the ESG  committee.

Article VI, the Duties of the Executive Committee

1.  Chairperson - The chairperson of the executive committee shall chair all support group meetings (general and executive) and provide an agenda in advance of each meeting.  The chairperson shall serve as an appointee to the college council and as the official representative of the support group.  The chairperson will also be the support group representative on the augmented president’s team, which meets monthly.  In addition, the chairperson should also attend the regular board of trustee meetings as a representative of the support group. 

If the chairperson is not available to attend the augmented president’s team meetings(s) and/or the board of trustee meetings, the vice chairperson or an ESG committee representative should attend in the chairperson's place.  In the event that ESG committee members and support group representatives to internal governance and other committees cannot fulfill their obligations or resign before the end of their term, the chairperson shall appoint a support group member to serve the remainder of the term subject to the approval of the ESG committee and the support group liaison appointed by the president.  The chairperson shall only vote on matters that come before the committee in case of a tie by the other members of the executive committee.  In case of a tie, the chairperson shall cast the deciding vote.  Otherwise, the chair shall not vote on matters that come before the committee.

2.  Vice Chairperson - The vice chairperson of the ESG committee shall, in the absence of the chairperson, assume the responsibilities of the chairperson.  The vice chairperson shall also act as a representative to the college council.

If the vice chairperson is not available to attend the college council meetings, the chairperson or the vice chairperson shall appoint a representative to attend in the vice chairperson’s place.

3.  Secretary - The secretary of the ESG committee shall be responsible for taking the meeting notes of the support group meetings (general and executive) the secretary shall also be responsible for the notification of all meetings to the executive committee and the constituency as directed by the chairperson.

4.  Treasurer - The treasurer of the ESG committee shall oversee financial records of the committee and authorize expenditures in accordance with support group spending guidelines.  These guidelines are drafted by the executive committee and approved by the support group as a whole.  A treasurer's report will be presented as requested by the ESG committee meeting and at the general support group meeting.

5.  Executive Support Group Committee Representatives - The committee representatives will represent the support group members of their respective areas at the regular meeting of the ESG committee.  These representatives will serve as an agent and conduit for their area colleagues.  They will convey their colleague’s concerns, questions, and recommendations to the ESG committee.  The committee shall conduct and respond to the monthly business of the support group and disseminate information back to the general membership.  The representatives shall also be responsible for polling and compiling their area constituents on votes that require a support group referendum.  Otherwise, the committee members shall be a working committee of the whole support group assisting the president in representing and determining support group interests.

6.  Representatives to Other Committees – Committee representatives who are not members of the ESG committee are expected to attend at least one meeting a year of the ESG committee to present a report on their committee activities.

Article VII, Election of Officers and Representatives

Elections will be scheduled every two years and will be held in June.

Nominations for executive committee area representatives will be solicited from each area of the college by the current executive committee representatives.  If more than 10 people are interested in serving on the ESG, an election by the entire support group body will be held.  The election will be by the support group constituency by secret ballot by simple majority.  All support group voting members shall cast one vote.  A plurality of votes will be required to be elected.    The 10 individuals receiving the most votes will become the members of the ESG. In the event of a tie,  a run-off election of the individuals who tied will be held.                        

Nominations for all of the offices of the ESG committee will then be made from the elected ESG committee.  A secret ballot by the ESG committee  determine these officers.  All ESG committee members shall cast one vote.  A plurality of votes, with a quorum present will be required to be elected.  The officers shall be elected for terms of two years, and will take office July 1.

Article VIII, Meetings and Quorum

General meetings of the support group as a whole shall be held at least twice per year with special meetings called as necessary.  A quorum for the support group as a whole shall be one more than half of the voting members.

The ESG committee meetings shall be held at least six times a year with special meetings called as necessary, July through June.  A quorum for ESG committee meetings shall be a simple majority, excluding the chairperson.  The support group as a whole may attend these meetings.

Meetings will be conducted according to Robert's Rules of Order, Newly Revised.

Article, IX, Support Group Committee Members

The support group representatives shall provide agendas and notes from each meeting to the ESG committee, as requested.  This information will be posted on the electronic bulletin board.  Before any important action is undertaken by the committee, it is the responsibility of the elected support group members of these committees, whenever possible, to bring these items to the ESG committee for discussion to promote a better informed support group as well as to ascertain the support group’s position on these matters.  Any of these representatives who are not elected members of the executive support group committee, shall be non-voting members at ESG committee meetings.  They shall be voting members at meetings of the support group as a whole.

Article X, Affiliations

The support group may be affiliated with other associations, with college approval, on the local, state, or national level when it is deemed by the membership to be in its best interest.  Support group members would like to attend conferences with other affiliates and be placed on appropriate lists that will enhance dialogue among other colleges.

Article XI, Amendments

The constitution and bylaws may be amended in whole or in part by a two-thirds majority vote of the voting members of the support group as a whole.  A copy of all changes must be submitted to the support group as a whole at least one week prior to voting action.  Changes to the constitution and bylaws shall be subject to the approval of president’s team and college council.

Article XII, Ratification of Constitution and Bylaws

After this constitution is accepted by majority votes of the support group as a whole, president's team, and college council, it will become effective immediately.

The ESG committee may write bylaws to supplement this document, within the powers and restrictions incorporated herein.  These bylaws must be approved by a two-thirds vote of the executive committee.

B.  Funding and Spending Guidelines

1.  Funding - Support group funds are normally derived from two sources:

  • Donations from members and other interested or affiliated parties.
  • Proceeds from volunteer sales (e.g., bake sales, craft fairs, etc.).

Funds may also come from other sources jointly approved by the ESG committee.  At least two officer signatures shall be required for all disbursements.

2.  Spending - The treasurer and ESG committee are the sole authorities for support group fund expenditures.  Funds shall normally be expended for the purpose of improving the morale, unity, and effectiveness of the support group (e.g., recreational events, recognition of major events in the life of a support group member, etc.); however, from time to time the ESG committee may authorize one-time expenditures for special situations.  In any event, the amount and rationale of all expenditures are the responsibility of the ESG committee and all such expenditures shall be detailed in the treasurer's monthly report.

Approved by Support Constituency Group 1/2/02

Review/Revision: 09/09/11